What is IMCHF ?
IMCHF International is a Christian child development organization dedicated to releasing children from poverty. Our ministry is twofold: We work through local churches to provide child development programs to deliver children from economic, physical, social and spiritual poverty, enabling them to become responsible, fulfilled Christian adults. And we speak out for children in poverty – informing, motivating and equipping others to become advocates for children.
What is your mission statement?
In response to the Great Commission, Compassion International exists as an advocate for children, to release them from their spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty and enable them to become responsible and fulfilled Christian adults.
How does Compassion work?
The hallmark of Compassion’s work is one-to-one child sponsorship. A sponsor is someone who has made the decision to personally invest in the life of a child in need. Through sponsorship, children are able to participate in a church-based program that offers life-changing benefits that range from educational opportunities to health care.
How and when did IMCHF start?
It began in the heart of one man moved by Korean War orphans in 1952. The Rev. Everett Swanson was on a successful preaching tour in South Korea when he encountered the bitter poverty of Korea’s unwanted children. He knew he had to do something.
Upon his return to the United States, Everett established a program that allowed caring people to provide food, shelter, education, medical care and Christian training for Korean orphans. That program was, and remains, the foundation and core of Compassion International.
Where does we work?
Today we works in 26 countries. In Africa, we work in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Togo and Uganda. In Central America, we work in the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua and Mexico. In South America, we work in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. In Asia, we work in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
How does IMCHF choose which countries to work in?
IMCHF follows an in-depth process of investigation, analysis and research for God’s direction to expand into new countries and communities. Compassion’s criteria for opening a new country include:
- God’s leading. Each decision about a new country is wrapped in prayer. No country is selected unless the responsible staff are convinced of God’s leading and blessing.
- Need. Compassion works in some of the world’s poorest communities. Local church partners then select the children in their communities who have the deepest need to participate in our program.
- Strong local church partners. Christian leaders and churches must be willing to invite our ministry into their country and competent Christians to staff country offices and lead projects.
- Risk management and legal issues. A country must not have legal barriers to our ministry. There must be a provision for international banking. Our work with the local church to encourage long-term Christian child development also must be understood and accepted.
What makes IMCHF stand out among other child development and/or sponsorship organizations?
We believe IMCHF has four very distinctive values:
- Christ-Centered. Without coercion, we teach the life-changing gospel to every child in a culturally relevant way.
- Child-Focused. Our ministry directly engages each child as a complete person.
- Church-Based. We choose to partner with the church as a local group of believers who can teach, train and mentor children. This is done in partnership with parents and the community.
- Committed to Integrity. We commit to excellence and integrity to best benefit the children we serve. We commit to help children, families and churches create relevant child development activities. We commit to the highest professional and biblical principles.
Can you explain IMCHF's rating on Charity Navigator?
On June 1, 2016, Charity Navigator introduced a revised method of calculation for the charities they review. This revised system
altered Compassion’s 4-star rating to a 3, less than three months after awarding Compassion a 4-star rating for the exact same numbers.
There are two changes that had the most impact on Compassion’s rating. First, Charity Navigator’s updated criteria removed “revenue growth” as a measure they evaluate. Even during difficult financial times in the economy, God has blessed Compassion with dedicated sponsors and donors who care deeply about impacting children around the world, allowing our ministry to continue to grow year over year. Second, the revenue growth metric was replaced by a “debt to asset ratio.” This ratio measures the assets a charity holds on its financial statements. This change impacts Compassion’s rating negatively because we choose to send dollars to the Implementing Church Partners every month for our programs that impact children.Since 1952, Compassion’s ministry model has proved to provide immense stability in the face of various economic situations. We believe our sponsors and donors are best served when their dollars are quickly put to use releasing children from poverty, not sitting unnecessarily idle in an account.
IMCHF’s strong commitment to financial transparency, integrity, and our core purpose of releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name is and will continue to be unwavering. Be assured, Compassion is committed to invest at least 80 cents of every dollar to fund the programs that benefit our Compassion-assisted children. For fiscal year 2016, 82.4 cents of every dollar were applied to these programs. In other words, our commitment to stewardship has not changed even though the calculations of Charity Navigator have undergone revisions.